A sartorial sin so heinous, it’s a crime against fashion humanity. The rebellious lovechild of “funky” and “ugly,” who stands tall, unapologetically defying the norms of good taste. Introducing: “Fugly.” It’s a riot of clashing prints, a symphony of jarring styles and a whimsical dance of silhouettes. “Fugliness” is not merely a lack of aesthetic appeal; rather, it’s a deliberate celebration of the unconventional, an artful fusion of style and irony. It’s fashion with a sense of self-awareness, a witty commentary on our obsession with appearances and the freedom that comes with embracing the eccentric. Fugly garments proudly accept their quirks while turning their flaws into features. They invite us to engage in a discourse about the arbitrary nature of beauty standards. By wearing something inherently “fugly” with confidence, we reclaim the narrative, turning the tables on conventional fashion and asserting our intellectual prowess. Fugly fashion, therefore, becomes a canvas for dissections about taste, culture, and societal norms.
Of course this takes us to my favorite case study in fugly, Crocs. Enter the cowboy boot Croc era-the epitome of fashion irony. In this gutsy combination, the timeless cowboy aesthetic meets the voguish Crocs. Creating a harmony so unexpected it’s sheer genius. The rubber clogs we now see flooding the average student’s wardrobe have donned a new look: a signature Croc Skin texture, metallic disco desert embroidery details, a spinning spur on the back, and decorated with nonsensical Jibbitz (the fun little charms to decorate your crocs). It’s a “fugly” creation so enticing it’s hard to look away. The cowboy boot, with its rich history, represents the embodiment of tradition and craftsmanship. Crocs, on the other hand, prioritize comfort over convention, embracing a relaxed vibe that stands in sharp contrast to the structured formality of the cowboy boot. This mashup forces us to confront our conceptions of what constitutes fashion. Cowboy boot Crocs are camp! They’re funky! They’re ugly! They’re “fugly!” (And in the best ways possible.)
By adopting these styles ironically, we reinterpret their meaning, transforming them from fashion faux pas into intentional statements. The irony adds depth to our fashion choices. It allows us to say, “Yes… I am wearing the cowboy boot crocs, they’re fugly. And that’s the point.” At its core, fugly fashion is more than just a trend; it’s a philosophy, a celebration of imperfections and an ode to authenticity. It’s a reminder that fashion, in all its celebrity, doesn’t have to adhere to society’s narrow definition of beauty.
Graphics by: Sydney Folsom